A Delhi Court framed charges against Olympic medallist wrestler Sushil Kumar and 17 others in the Chhatrasal Stadium murder case, setting the stage for their trial.
Two-time Olympic medalist Sushil Kumar will now face trial for murder after being charged by a Delhi court in relation to the death of Sagar Dhankar. Kumar has been charged, along with 17 others, with murder, attempt to murder, rioting, unlawful assembly and other sections, including criminal conspiracy.
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Twenty three-year-old Dhankar, a former junior national wrestling champion, died after a brawl among wrestlers in the parking lot of Delhi's Chhatrasal Stadium on May 4, 2021. Investigations revealed that the fight took place over a dispute regarding a flat owned by Kumar which Dhankar used to rent.
Dhankar and two of his friends had to be admitted following the brawl. However, he succumbed to his injuries. According to the postmortem report, Dhankar died due to cerebral damage resulting from blunt object impact.
The police named Kumar as the main accused after video footage emerged in which the Olympian is seen assaulting Dhankar. After being on the run for nearly three weeks, Kumar was finally arrested along with co-accused Ajay Kumar and has been incarcerated in a Delhi jail since.
In its status report, the Delhi Police named Kumar as the main accused in the case. Kumar is alleged to have conspired with other co-accused to arrange weapons and men and kidnap the victims from different areas, to commit the offence.
Additional Sessions Judge Shivaji Anand framed charges against Kumar and other accused under various provisions of the Indian Penal Code, including those related to murder, rioting and criminal conspiracy. A detailed order is awaited.
This is a new low for the wrestler who won bronze at the Beijing Olympics in 2008 and a silver in the 2012 London Olympics. The wrestler was also the first Indian to win a gold medal at the world championships in 2010. Kumar has won three gold medals across the 2010, 2014 and 2018 editions of the Commonwealth Games.
(With inputs from PTI)